Groups join forces to stop reckless, distracted driving
PHILADELPHIA - The Pennsylvania Teen Safe Driving Coalition, Impact Teen Drivers, the Pennsylvania DUI Association and city officials have joined forces to raise awareness of a highly preventable public health epidemic: reckless and distracted driving.
Motor vehicle collisions remain the number one killer of teens in America. The Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that in Pennsylvania alone, traffic collisions killed 313 young adults (aged 16 to 24) in 2010. That number is comparable to the capacity of two A320 commercial aircrafts.
"Teen safe driving practices are learned and we need to continue to raise awareness of safe driving practices," said C Stephen Erni, executive director, PA DUI Association. "Bringing awareness to teen safe driving during this week is not enough we need to all practice safe driving, every time we get into a vehicle."
Reckless and distracted driving is the foremost cause of these collisions. The CDC found that distracted driving killed more than seven young adults (age 16 to 19) per day in 2010.
"We lose sight of the fact that everyday behaviors we see on the roadways are a threat to all motorists," said Impact Teen Drivers executive director Dr. Kelly Browning.
The statistics speak for themselves, but they do not do all the talking; sharing these staggering statistics with youth is only one part of the equation. During National Teen Driver Safety Week, Pennsylvania officials are emphasizing the need for a holistic approach that combines education, experiential learning, and enforcement to change the driving culture.
"Teen driving crashes can be prevented with education, parental involvement and minimizing distractions," said Felicity DeBacco, PA Teen Safe Driving Coalition. "We all need to work together to stop this epidemic from harming our teens."